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No more Joe Sheehan? I guess I'll have to get my daily allotment of snark and passive aggressiveness somewhere else.
Ultimately though, truly bad, average, "sorta good", bad...what's the difference. Either you put yourself in position to win, make the playoffs and win the crapshoot that is the MLB playoffs...or you don't. It's nice to praise the saber GMs, but their track records aren't that much better than non saber GMs.
Begin their rebuilding process? When did the Blue Jays build anything?? Perpetually being in rebuilding mode...such is the plight of every small market team that continually trades veterans for prospects. I guess that's ok though. Better to do that, never give yourself a chance to compete, but have an ok farm system and make BPro heap praise upon you.
Didn't Toronto show a greater losses than Houston?
What's the deal with people deeming comments are "inappropriate"? Is Baseball Prospectus the Ms. Manners club? Jeez.
What do all those numbers mean in the front of each player's stat line?
Where would someone like Nelson Cruz fall?
Or just keep the standard stats and clean up with your advance knowledge of what really drives these stats...?
Owner: Drayton McLane Jr.
School: Baylor University, Waco, Tx. MBA (Marketing) from Michigan State University.
Why: Took over family grocery distribution company and, by implementing computer technology to increase efficiency, grew it into a $19 billion dollar enterprise. In 1994 McLane sold his company to friend Sam Walton Jr. for shares in Wal-Mart. Is still the chairman for the McLane Group, a holding company for his many, many business enterprises.
ASTROS: Convince Drayton buy a #2 starter, find a catcher, find someone to platoon with Bourn. Pray to the baseball gods -- fervently.
Joe, I appreciate the cool, objective view of the Astros, but you\'re wrong on a few counts.
Ed Wade\'s mandate was to put together a team that would feign contention and fill that stadium, which is smart because Houston\'s sweet spot on the win/revenue curve is about 80-83 wins, after that the marginal bang just isn\'t there: Houston fans LOVE mediocrity...we\'re \"clutch city\"?a I don\'t understand how Drayton McLane has exploited the market forces to work that way, but it has, this team knows what it is doing.
The draft was not a failure simply because we took Jason Castro first, that was a failure at that juncture in the draft, but it also allowed us to sign him quickly, and then have a clear picture of how much resources we had to allocate across the rest of our picks. They had some tremendous performances from their draft picks right away. Castro\'s SLG was lower than his OBP, but his OBP was .380ish and he was adjusting to a wooden bat.
This team is underperforming all the adjusted metrics and Pythag formulas, but Cecil Cooper is a terrible manager. He\'s left starters into get shelled to save the bull pen, and he\'s left bull pen guys into get shelled to save other bull pen guys (hell just subtract Oscar Villareal from the season and the gap easily approaches 10 runs). Pitching has been TERRIBLE. Roy Oswalt was also completely off for the first half of the season and clearly struggling from the stretch (at one point 11 of 14 HR came from the stretch and the stretch only). They\'ve also been short projected number two SP Wandy Rodriguez for a month+ this season and have relied on their terrible replacement level. Moehler is definitely a fluke as the last time I calculated, he had a 5+ DIPS 3.0 ERA, but I don\'t forsee him actually playing a big role next year.
Drayton McLane is about to up his willingness to spend, because as he\'s seen for most of this year, attendance has been done, which suggests that Astros fans taste of success in \'04-\'05 has changed their taste and preferences for baseball. He\'ll have to treat whatever increases in the payroll to accommodate Ben Sheets -- who Roy Oswalt and Lance Berkman have both spoken to about becoming an Astros and also spoken to Wade and Drayton about, as well -- a tax on previous incompetence, but he\'ll do it. With Roy Oswalt not performing miserable for half the year and Ben Sheets making a minimum of 130 IP of Ben Sheets baseball, tell me, please, how this team isn\'t a upper 80\'s win team?
If you want to cite offense as the achilles heel, I\'ll cite Cooper insanely slow learning curve, which he has figured out. He\'s no longer stacking the line-up with high SLG, low OBP back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back. Hunter Pence has shown a lot of plate discipline as of late and Bourn is getting his stroke back -- he was simply over matched to start the year. Towles is another guy who was just rushed and may not be a great as his cup of coffee indicated, but still will better than what we\'ve had this year. Wiggy will not replicate August ever, but he\'s still an adequate NL 3B.
Ed Wade and Drayton McLane aren\'t anyone who has intelligent grasp on baseball analysis favorites, but they don\'t have to be unnecessarily trashed. Wade convinced Drayton to take restocking the farm seriously and he\'s about to get a few compensation picks from the likes of Wolf and Brocail. So give the man some credit and perhaps the absolute trouncing of a team should be left to those who have to watch them play day in and day out all summer.